By Brody Beaupre
While some people think of Martin Luther King Day, they might just think about a day off of school or work, but there is so much more to this holiday.
We celebrate MLK day to honor the life and work of Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Dr. King was an American Baptist minister and, more importantly, a civil rights activist during the Civil Rights Movement in the 1960’s, who promoted peaceful disobedience and led protests to take a stand against segregation, some of which got violent toward the protestors. One of his greatest accomplishments was the bus boycott. Lasting 382 days, African Americans did not ride busses until the Supreme Court declared segregation on busses unconstitutional on December 21, 1956. According to www.nobelprize.org, “During these days of boycott, King was arrested, his home was bombed, he was subjected to personal abuse, but at the same time he emerged as a Negro leader of the first rank.”
Dr. King was an excellent public speaker and inspired so many people then and now with his speeches. His most famous speech is his “I Have A Dream” speech, which he gave on the footsteps of the Lincoln Memorial in 1963 in front of 250,000 people.
You can find the full speech here.
As a school, Oak Hall celebrates the life and legacy of Dr. King by taking the day off from school, but also held a special assembly for the Upper School students to remind us about the sacrifices that were made. This year Oak Hall was lucky to have Mrs. Caronne Rush talk to us about the great work of Dr. King, allowing all of us to coexist in peace.
As we have the day off from school and work, I hope that we can take some time to appreciate and reflect on how far we have come thanks to Dr. King and see that there is still more that we can be doing to make this country and the world a better, safer place for people of all ages, sexualities, ethnicities, and races.